The first known record of a school in Calhoun County was the Presbyterian Church School in 1849. This school was located on the corner of Ann and Austin streets where the Courthouse Annex building sits today.
The Indianola Public School, with teachers F.C. Goeffert, J.M. Bickford, James A. Duggeon and Mrs. C.A. Ring, was established in the late 1840’s or early 1850’s.In 1854, Calhoun County was divided into four school districts. District One covered Port Lavaca, District Two covered Green Lake, Long Mott and East Santos Bay. District Three included Indianola and the surrounding areas, finally District Four covered Matagorda Island and the town of Saluria. Teachers, at the time, were required to have a Certificate of Examination and the pay was a mere six cents a day per student.
The Indianola Male and Female School was established in 1855 by R.W. Yates. In 1859 H.B. Cleveland established the School for Boys and Girls in the Indianola area. Tuition was $2.00 to $5.00 a month per student.
Residents of Powderhorn established a school that was closed in 1912, the date it was established is unknown.
In the Indianola area the St. Mary’s Institute was established by French and Irish nuns and had a peak enrollment of 475.
Indianola High School was established and housed in the Methodist Church in Indianola.On Matagorda Island a school was established at the town of Saluria in 1851. This school was destroyed in 1875 by a hurricane.
The Long Mott School was in session in 1892 with enrollment that required six teachers.In 1897 a school was built in Port Lavaca for all grades on Main Street. The first class graduated in 1898 with six students receiving diplomas. By 1909, 250 students were enrolled at the school. The building was utilized as a school until 1910. In 1910 a new brick school was constructed in Port Lavaca at the corner of Main and Virginia Streets. The building was a four story building with two water cisterns.
Magnolia Beach opened a school in 1912 composed of grades 1 through 8. The school was damaged during a hurricane in 1942 and students were enrolled in Port Lavaca schools.
In 1902 Six Mile opened a school and built a larger school in 1918. Six Mile records indicate that students earned a State Volleyball Championship.
In 1911 Kamey opened a school in a one room schoolhouse that taught grades 1 through 8. Maida McKamey taught school there until 1948.Olivia had schools that taught children during the day and adults at night. Olivia was composed of a large number of Swedish immigrants who wanted to learn English.
Piper’s Lake at Carancahua Bay established a school and built a two story building in 1912. This community established a separate school for Hispanic students.
The Plainview School was located on Half League Road. In 1920 grades 1 through 8 were taught in one room by one teacher.The Chocolate School and Sweetwater School started at St. Paul’s at Prairie Church. In 1912 a new school was built in Sweetwater. The Chocolate and Sweetwater Schools consolidated with the Port Lavaca Schools in 1918.Before the schools were integrated in Port Lavaca, African-American students were enrolled in the Port Lavaca Negro School. It had less than thirty students and Mr. James Choice was the teacher. Mr. Choice was succeeded by Reverend A.K. Black until Alice Ora Crawford moved to Port Lavaca from Chicago. At that time, the school was located on Ann and Mulberry Streets. Miss Crawford, a graduate of Fiske University, was given the position of principal and the first graduating class was in 1910. It was a senior class of three students. That building was later destroyed by fire and it moved to two small houses on the bay front.
In 1923, the Rosenwald School was built on the site of the original structure and in 1937 its name was changed to the Wilkins School in honor of its principal, Alice Ora Wilkins. The first graduating class from the Wilkins School was in May of 1938. The 1955 class was the last graduating class to complete twelfth grade. Integration was completed in 1965 and the school closed its doors in May of that year.On July 30, 1948 the County Board of Trustees annexed Seadrift School District, Olivia Common School District, Six Mile Common School District, Long Mott Common School District, Magnolia Beach Common School District, Kamey Common School District, Port O’Connor Common School District and Roemerville Common School District to the Port Lavaca Independent School District. The boundaries of PLISD now coincided with the Calhoun County boundaries and therefore the Board changed the name of the district to Calhoun County Independent School District, effective September 1, 1948.